I guess I’d better introduce myself at least a little before just getting into the main content of my first rant here. When Billy Zonos started read/RANT, I was intrigued because while the VS System card game was all about comic books and superheroes, I never really interacted with VS players in that capacity. I’ve followed read/RANT since the beginning on and off, while also updating my own blog. Now I’m going to do some of my own rants here.
Most of the posts I’ll do here though will be in the format that the rest of this is in. I’ll go over the comics I am interested in for a week and the reasons behind my interest. I’ll also include a few comics that you might have thought I’d have been interested in and the reasons I am not. This is also more of an intro of my tastes than anything, as I’m not really looking at the individual issue as much as I might in a future post.
As you can probably guess from my username, I love Deadpool. I pride myself in liking him before the end of Cable & Deadpool, and thus liking him even before he had one ongoing series. Now of course he has three ongoing series, this being one of them. I can’t start talking about this series though until I’ve mentioned Daniel Way, the writer. For the first ten or so issues I read Wolverine: Origins, which he wrote. Then I stopped because it was nothing particularly special writing-wise, and I absolutely hate Steve Dillon’s art, so it wasn’t worth it.Then Deadpool guest starred in it in between C&D and his self-titled, and I had to pick it up. And I absolutely hated Way’s depiction of Deadpool. Hated.With a passion. When he started the self-titled, though, it worked out a lot better. Right now, his Deadpool is very varied with some good stories and some bad ones.
See a theme in the comics I like yet? This, surprisingly enough is actually my favorite series out right now. The premise is ridiculous, sure, but the execution is excellent. Victor Gischler is a really good writer and seems to be more comfortable writing with a large cast, and while Deadpool: Merc with a Mouth had a large cast, it never really felt like a series centering on Deadpool, instead being more a series that had him in it as one of the main characters. That can be okay with other characters, maybe, but Deadpool really needs to be the star in his own series. With Deadpool Corps, while Deadpool is again one of the main characters instead of the main character, the other main characters are all Deadpools also, so you still get the right amount of Deadpool. Now, the biggest complaint about this series that I will predict from people is Rob Liefeld’s art. Let me just say that he is not the greatest artist ever, and yes, I’ve seen the Captain America and all of that stuff. No, Liefeld’s not the greatest artist, but he basically just suffers from not being able to get beyond when he was the greatest thing ever, to an extent. Really, I don’t care at all. His art in the series is competent, and I don’t read Deadpool for the art, I read it for the story and for what Deadpool does. Liefeld is able to get that across.
This is a really weird series. It reminds me a lot of the older Punisher Kills the Marvel Universe, except that here, the heroes are all zombie-esque, so the killing is a lot more justified. The main problem I have with it is that I really don’t feel that the Punisher could kill the Marvel Universe, even slightly more mindless and zombified-esque. That was also my problem with Punisher Kills the Marvel Universe. While the Punisher is guy who has gone up against lots of heroes and villains, he has no superpowers of his own, he is just a good shot (not even Bullseye/Hawkeye/Green Arrow/etc), and has lots of guns. Maybe it is because he’s struggled against normal people that I don’t feel he could take people like Captain America or Wolverine. He could get really lucky with a lot of heroes and villains, but other ones, I feel he would just fail. The series is fun though, and, you guessed it, I got it because of Deadpool.
I’ve picked up New Avengers for a long time now, since the second or third arc of the old New Avengers series. Mostly, I just like the team. Luke Cage is an interesting character, especially in the leader role he’s taken. Spider-Man has always been a character I’ve liked, and while I haven’t read his stuff recently (BND pissed me off enough to stop wasting money on ASM), he fits in well here. Wolverine is on every team, and works well enough here. Ms. Marvel is a great character, and I think it was interesting to see her as part of the Mighty Avengers, then becoming a New Avenger after the Secret Invasion. Iron Fist intrigues me enough to like him, but not enough to read things just for him, but he’s cool. Thing works well with the group as the “team” guy who has been on a team forever, and is on this one only because he wants to get away from the FF for a little while. Hawkeye and Mockingbird are interesting together with the post-Secret Invasion stuff going on, and I like having Hawkeye back to being Hawkeye. Jessica Jones is a character I like and I think should be on the team as long as she actually gets a new costume and does something. All in all, though, this New Avengers is decent, but not as good, in my opinion as the first series at the beginning.
Honestly, this series is not as appealing to me as it may be for other people. I think part of that has to do with having Nova and Moon Knight on the same team. Don’t get me wrong, I like Nova and I like Moon Knight, but I also wouldn’t put Punisher and Silver Surfer on the same team. Nova has the entire Nova force at his command and is absurdly powerful, and he is so much more mature and a great leader at this point in time, post-Annihilation. He is taking charge during the Thanos stuff right now, with the universe where life won. Oh, and he’s on the same team with a crazy guy (big emphasis on crazy) who gets power at night from an Egyptian god to be less powerful than Spider-Man when he is sick. The team doesn’t make sense as a secret team. Moon Knight, sure. Ant-Man, okay. Black Widow, definitely. Valkyrie, meh. Beast, you’re pushing it. War Machine, no freaking way. Nova, you’ve got to be kidding me. The execution so far has not been great, either, in my opinion. Maybe that’s because of my post-Annihilation view of Nova, but I find it hard to believe that a team with Moon Knight and Ant-Man (the irredeemable version at that) could do better than Nova. I’ll give it another arc to see if I like it more, otherwise, I’m dumping it probably.
What can I say about the Thunderbolts? Meh. I liked the New Thunderbolts, and by that, I mean, the post Avengers Disassembled Thunderbolts, and I read that series and loved it. I like Grummett’s art, sure, but the characters were good. Then there was the Initiative, which I was hesitant about at first, but then grew to love, and post Ellis, it just got worse until Dark Reign at which point it became pretty stupid. The current one? Totally stupid. I can honestly say that Juggernaut is the only reason I am reading Thunderbolts and I’m pissed that they depowered him again. I actually enjoyed Juggernaut in the Uncanny X-Men books and then as part of New Excalibur. Juggernaut was always one of my favorite villains because he technically was a villain, but he wasn’t the worst guy in the world. He just wanted revenge against his stepbrother who he thought got more love from his dad than he did (which wasn’t true). He also was a jerk and arrogant beyond belief, but he was an interesting character. In Uncanny X-Men and New Excalibur, I thought he was great. This version is reverting him to some dumb idiot who has no redeeming values. Like Secret Avengers, I’ll give it one more arc and then I’m done if it isn’t better.
COMICS I AM NOT GETTING
I believe I mentioned how much I hated Brand New Day earlier. Let me clarify. There were some good story arcs as a part of Brand New Day. Oh, and when I say BND, I mean the entire post-One More Day Spidey stuff. I think that they got rid of BND in the sense that after many months, it was no longer part of that whole arc-ish thingy. I started picking Spider-Man up monthly as part of The Other, so I got Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man, ASM and Marvel Knights/Sensational Spider-Man. I was fine with getting three Spider-Man issues a month, because they were all part of separate stories by separate teams that had no interaction with each other whatsoever. Then, when OMD happened and in BND, there was only ASM tri-monthly, I picked it up, and some arcs were good, like the one with the snow and Wolverine and tribal stuff with art by Bachalo, or I also enjoyed the Thunderbolts stuff mostly because of Spider-Man encountering Norman Osborn post-OMD. Mostly, they were meh, and some were bad. My main problem was that they were ridiculously varied. Because each month was a different story arc with a different creative team, things got stupid quickly. First off, each team had to do a whole three issue story arc in a month, and they had to do each arc as a three issue arc, no more, no less, since it came out tri-monthly. Things seemed frantic and awkward. This is supposed to answer the OMD/BND questions, but I stopped caring far too long ago. If this had come out a long time ago, when I was still into Spider-Man, I would have been interested. At this point, there’s a lot that I have missed and don’t want to be caught up on that would make this awkward.
This is a semi-crossover with Thunderbolts, which I’ve already talked about. Honestly, though, this series doesn’t interest me. I loved Avengers: The Initiative in the first year. I really did. I like looking back at issue 12 and seeing Cloud 9 as this hardened sniper, and seeing what she was like in issue 1, and seeing how horrible the Initiative was for persons. By that, I mean individual persons got f-ed up badly by the whole Initiative idea, like Cloud 9 (or MVP, or the girl with the other gauntlet thingy, or …). It might have worked in a loose sense of the term for people’s perceptions of heroes, but it was just madness and I loved it. Then it went downhill and got worse and worse. Then it got canceled and replaced by this, which I am not interested in at all because of how much I started to dislike A:TI. I don’t want to see the same thing with new characters, characters that I don’t care about. A:TI made me care initially, but then made me stop caring. I just am uninterested in trying that again.
Dear Deadpool, can I explain something? I know brucecastle likes Jeph Loeb and his recent stuff and I’ve vehemently opposed him. Right now, I’m just going to say that this would be something I would get if it really got rid of Rulk, like the blurb says. If there were no more Rulk forever, I would see how they got rid of him. Being as this is a comic world, though, I am not going to believe that. There is no reason I can see for Rulk going away permanently. Anybody can come back, and really, this will not be the “FINAL FATE OF THE RED HULK” (as the all caps blurb states). I know a couple people like Hulk, and that’s fine. I just don’t like it at all. It doesn’t appeal to me in the slightest unless it has Deadpool (which it has had, goddammit).